By Robin Wander
When the exhibition Nick Cave opens at the Anderson Collection at Stanford University, visitors will encounter the intersection of visual art and performance in a collection of Cave’s Soundsuits, videos and a documentary film.
The exhibition opens Sept. 14 and runs through Aug. 14, 2017. The Anderson Collection is located at 314 Lomita Drive on campus. The works in the Nick Cave exhibition are on loan from the Anderson family, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and private collectors.
Cave, born in Missouri and now based in Chicago, is the director of the graduate fashion program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He is known for his Soundsuits, which are full-body-sized sculptures that are sometimes worn as costumes and performed in, and are made of everything from collected and repurposed buttons to human hair, beaded baskets, sequins and the occasional sock monkey. Often created in response to current events, they conceal the wearer’s identity, leaving the viewer with no indication of race, gender or age.
“Cave’s work blurs the boundaries between multiple disciplines,” said Jason Linetzky, director of the Anderson Collection. “An encounter with his Soundsuits inspires the viewer to reconsider the meaning and value of collected objects, transporting us between Cave’s invention and our memory; between sculpture, costume and dance, and the tangible and ephemeral.”
Linetzky credits the Anderson family’s ongoing commitment to collection sharing and their lead loan of three Soundsuits as the inspiration for this exhibition.
“We are thrilled to be engaging the Stanford community and museum visitors with this stimulating and thought-provoking contemporary exhibition,” he said.
Cave challenges conventions on what it means to be a visual artist, a performer, a crafter and an educator. His work invites contemplation on identity, visual culture and performance. Using visual performance as a springboard, the Anderson Collection will present public programs, student engagement opportunities and direct interaction with the artistic practice and concepts incorporated into Cave’s work.
Through Cave’s genre-crossing works, audiences and visitors will be able to imagine what it means to be a performer in a visual arts space with events and happenings throughout the year